Last Day in Tokyo

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November 2nd 2012
Published: November 2nd 2012
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I spent the day experiencing more Japanese culture. I visited the Bank of Japan Currency Museum. That is not exactly "cultural", but I thought it would be interesting to see - and it is near my hotel. There is a nice, brief display of the history of the use of currency in Japan. It sounds very similar, in broad strokes, to my understanding of the history of currency in Europe over those same centuries. After the museum, I took the subway to the Tokyo Bay area. I had wanted to see the bay anyway, but my goal was to visit the Toyota Mega Web. It is a (free) showcase/theme park for Toyota products. They have their latest vehicles on display and of course the Prius is prominently featured. There are models that are not available in the US, including a very sporty Prius hybrid. (See picture) There is also a "history garage" with some cars from the 1960's and 1970's. These were mostly European and American, including a Chevy Impala and a 1964 Ford Mustang. (See picture) After seeing the cars, I went to a nearby "onsen", that is, a hot springs. This particular one pumps mineral water from beneath Tokyo
Bay and provides bathing facilities in the Japanese manner. To me, it was very much like hot tubbing, except that it was all men (the women had separate facilities) and there were several large pools that are held at different temperatures. I soaked for a little bit in several of them, just to try them out. Then I put on my yukata, a long Japanese robe, and had a snack in the common area. I was surprised how many people were there in the middle of a weekday afternoon. There were young and old, singles and couples, and families with children, but there were very few Westerners. (See picture of the common area. No cameras allowed in bathing area.) When I was done at the onsen, I took the subway to Shibuya Crossing because I had only been there in the daytime and I wanted to see the area at night when all the lights were on. The place really does teem with people in the evening, especially, I suppose, a Friday night. (See picture) Today was the last full day of my RTW, so this will be my final blog entry. Tomorrow I fly home, leaving midafternoon and arriving
in the morning of the same day. (Thank you, International Dateline!) It has been a good trip and I have done everything I wanted to do, so I am very pleased with the whole adventure.

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2nd November 2012

Blog Well Done
We, in your mother's writing class, have all enjoyed your trip around the world. I, personally, looked forward to my little visit each day with new experiences in a different part of the world. Thank you for posting each day so others could travel with you on your journey.
2nd November 2012

Hi Bill, Just wanted to say thank you for "taking" me on the RTW!! I loved it!! Learned a lot, enjoyed the pictures, and loved hearing about your lunches! You made your journey extremely interesting. Have a safe trip back to Portland! Linda

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